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In an Instant: The New Facebook Feature to Prepare For

In an Instant: The New Facebook Feature to Prepare For

In the fast-paced world we live in, we want everything to be as instant as possible. Nobody wants to waste time waiting for content to download. And even though we might only be talking about seconds, it can feel like a lifetime for the average consumer in the 21st century. To solve this ‘first world problem’, Facebook is aiming to speed up the consumption of online articles by cutting the download time from an average of eight seconds to something much more instantaneous. Enter Instant Articles Launched by Facebook on May 13 this year, the Instant Articles feature provides news publishers with the opportunity to create a “faster and richer reading experience” in news feeds with the aim of giving users the “same high quality, fluid experience and interactivity” that is expected from a highly functioning mobile app. According to Facebook, the new Instant Articles feature has four main benefits. 1. Fast and responsive – Instant Articles will load 10 times faster than the standard mobile web, stories will be displayed quicker with Facebook’s native mobile infrastructure, and Facebook says there will be more support for low bandwidth network connections. 2. Interactive and immersive – Instant Articles will bring content to life by allowing users to instantly zoom into high-resolution images and view auto-playing videos as they scroll down. The auto-play function is an obvious key benefit for publishers, as auto-playing videos generally leads to increased content consumption and sharing. Interactive maps will also be available to see where the story took place, and users can choose to hear the author’s voice with embedded audio captions. 3. Simple and...
Have You Considered Facebook to Host Your Marketing Videos?

Have You Considered Facebook to Host Your Marketing Videos?

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then a video must be worth a million. Well, it is true at least to say that video is becoming an increasingly important part of many B2B content marketing strategies! But while you might have used YouTube to host your video content in the past, Facebook has become a major competitor. Facebook becoming more popular with brands According to social media data company Socialbakers, Facebook business page owners uploaded more videos directly to Facebook in November 2014 than they did to YouTube. Although the margin was quite tight at first, the gap widened significantly in December, when brands posted 20,000 more videos on Facebook than they shared via YouTube. And in a move that is set to be a game changer for B2B marketers aiming to get the highest levels of engagement from their videos, Facebook also announced the launch of an embeddable video player in March this year. This means that users are now able to embed videos that are hosted by Facebook anywhere on the world wide web, just as they can do with YouTube or Vimeo videos. Facebook versus YouTube If you’ve put in the effort to create a video for your organisation, whether it is a professional project or something you’ve captured on your smartphone, you’ll want it to be seen by as many current and/or potential customers as possible. So as long as your target market uses Facebook, uploading and sharing videos straight from Facebook might just be the way to go in order to achieve the greatest levels of engagement. Why? For a while now, Facebook’s algorithms have pushed videos into users’ news feeds to...
5 Tips for Using SlideShare

5 Tips for Using SlideShare

SlideShare is one of the largest free platforms for sharing professional content on the web, and it can be a fantastic tool to help you get the most out of your presence on LinkedIn. You can use it to easily share presentations, infographics, documents, videos, PDFs, reports and webinars directly from your LinkedIn profile, and it is ideal for showcasing your projects, ideas and research, and leveraging your content with current and potential customers. SlideShare was founded in October 2006 and acquired by LinkedIn in May 2012. It can help you increase the reach of your business, improve brand awareness, and generate and qualify sales leads. However, it is currently highly under-utilised, especially given that it can provide businesses with a new way to stand out from the online and social crowd. If you haven’t considered using SlideShare, now might be the time to get on board. Here are five tips for using SlideShare effectively: 1. Avoid using long and text heavy content – While this a good general rule for any PowerPoint presentation, when creating content for social sharing purposes, it should be even less text heavy, and incorporate a supporting image per slide or concept. A shorter and more visually appealing presentation means that readers will be more engaged and be left wanting more! 2. Tag and optimise your content – While SlideShare is search engine optimised, you can also easily embed SlideShare presentations into your blogs, web pages and emails. You should include relevant keyword tags (not just those that are trending) and incorporate those tags into the title and description so that the content is more...
Could Your Organisation Benefit from a Periscope or Meerkat?

Could Your Organisation Benefit from a Periscope or Meerkat?

The social media world has been introduced to a new technological advancement – live streaming apps. Live streaming apps provide users with the opportunity to broadcast live video and audio from their smartphones to followers, who can then comment on the action as it takes place. The link can be passed along to others to boost the audience. But while live streaming is likely to become a craze with purely social users, it also has a number of applications for businesses. Introducing Meerkat and Periscope  Meerkat scampered onto the social media scene at the beginning of March 2015. The idea was inspired by a similar live broadcasting application called Yevvo, which launched in mid-2013. But with a lack of focus and limited social sharing capability, it didn’t really kick off. Meerkat aimed to engage a much wider community, similar to Twitter. However, Meerkat didn’t corner the market for long. Just two weeks later, Twitter’s rival offering Periscope popped up at the South by Southwest Interactive conference in Austin, Texas, after a year in development. How they work The two apps work in a similar way, but Twitter-owned Periscope is actually more independent from Twitter than Meerkat, which relies on the social media platform quite heavily. In Meerkat, any Likes and comments are reflected on the user’s Twitter profile, whereas all engagement on Periscope is kept within the app. Periscope also allows viewers to Like the content by tapping the screen as often as they want. Each tap sends a small heart floating up from the screen’s bottom right-hand corner, which lets the broadcasters see how engaged the audience is. Life after streaming In Meerkat, once the live...
3 Top Tips for Twitter Testimonials

3 Top Tips for Twitter Testimonials

Social media is an excellent way of engaging your target market in conversation, but there are businesses that steer clear because of the threat of negative feedback. While the possibility of negative feedback certainly exists, if you have yet to jump on board with Twitter, you could actually be missing out on a very influential brand-enhancing tool. While it is easy to get caught up in the fear factor of being tagged in a negative tweet, every engagement (whether good or bad) provides you with the opportunity to add a sense of authenticity and responsibility to your brand. So rather than fear the fallout, how about tapping into the positive testimonials to make them work in your favour? It can be a very powerful way to build trust with your target market. Here are three of our top tips for capturing and making the most of Twitter testimonials. 1. Encourage customers to tweet testimonials using hashtags If you want to encourage interaction and feedback from your clients, ask those who have used your products and services to supply comments using a particular hashtag, such as #ArticleWritersTestimonial. Tweet your request into the Twittersphere, or mention it in the company newsletter or on the website. Although this type of request has caused issues for some big brands in the past (such as McDonalds where the hashtag has been taken out of context) it can actually be an effective method for small to medium-sized B2B organisations with a niche audience. The key is to respond to all the feedback you receive, and ‘favourite’ the positive ones as a way of saying thank you. 2. Find testimonials...
LinkedIn Links with Lynda

LinkedIn Links with Lynda

As the world’s largest professional network, LinkedIn has long been known as the place to keep track of your professional contacts, and it provides a wealth of opportunities to grow your business networks, share content, connect with your target market, attract new clients, create new partnerships and build your brand. And now, the network is also cementing its position as a place to develop targeted skills with its acquisition of veteran subscription online learning company, Lynda. What is Lynda? Lynda provides a comprehensive collection of premium video content and online training courses taught by industry experts on a wide range of professional topics, such as business, technology and creative skills. The acquisition makes total sense. Millions of professionals around the world are in a constant state of learning to keep their skills relevant, and the deal propels LinkedIn into the professional skills education market overnight. What can Lynda do for my business? Through Lynda, LinkedIn will have the capacity to highlight and identify the skills your business requires to secure a new client. You will then be prompted by the platform to take relevant and accredited courses for nominal fee to help you or your staff acquire these skills. Afterwards, you have the opportunity to display your new accreditation via status updates and in your profile – therefore building trust and credibility with your customers. So why should businesses invest in Lynda? There is more to Lynda than meets the eye. As well as managing professional development, Lynda is a powerful tool for seeking and attracting new clients looking for specific skill-sets. In a previous blog, we covered the importance...